Friday, December 16, 2011

When An Atheist Dies...

RIP Christopher Hitchens.. one of my favourite atheists.. Who has such amazing quotes, and who wasn't afraid to say what he thought in a witty way. The man who put some really awesome doubt into my mind. Who helped to shape me into the skeptical women I am today.

Here are some of my favourite quotes from the late Christopher Hitchens:

"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence.

The only position that leaves me with no cognitive dissonance is atheism. It is not a creed. Death is certain, replacing both the siren-song of Paradise and the dread of Hell. Life on this earth, with all its mystery and beauty and pain, is then to be lived far more intensely: we stumble and get up, we are sad, confident, insecure, feel loneliness and joy and love. There is nothing more; but I want nothing more.

Human decency is not derived from religion. It precedes it.

Our belief is not a belief. Our principles are not a faith. We do not rely soley upon science and reason, because these are necessary rather than sufficient factors, but we distrust anything that contradicts science or outrages reason. We may differ on many things, but what we respect is free inquiry, openmindedness, and the pursuit of ideas for their own sake.

The essence of the independent mind lies not in what it thinks, but in how it thinks.

I suppose that one reason I have always detested religion is its sly tendency to insinuate the idea that the universe is designed with 'you' in mind or, even worse, that there is a divine plan into which one fits whether one knows it or not. This kind of modesty is too arrogant for me.

I try to deny myself any illusions or delusions, and I think that this perhaps entitles me to try and deny the same to others, at least as long as they refuse to keep their fantasies to themselves.

Take the risk of thinking for yourself, much more happiness, truth, beauty, and wisdom will come to you that way.

Faith is the surrender of the mind; it’s the surrender of reason, it’s the surrender of the only thing that makes us different from other mammals. It’s our need to believe, and to surrender our skepticism and our reason, our yearning to discard that and put all our trust or faith in someone or something, that is the sinister thing to me. Of all the supposed virtues, faith must be the most overrated.

Hatred, though it provides often rather junky energy, is a terrific way of getting you out of bed in the morning and keeping you going. If you don’t let it get out of hand, it can be canalized into writing.

The four most overrated things in life are champagne, lobster, anal sex and picnics."

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